in·​ward | \ ˈin-wərd How to pronounce inward (audio) \

Definition of inward

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : situated on the inside : inner
2a : of or relating to the mind or spirit inward peace
b : absorbed in one's own mental or spiritual life : introspective
3 : marked by close acquaintance : familiar
4 : directed toward the interior


\ ˈin-wərd How to pronounce inward (audio) \
variants: or inwards \ ˈin-​wərdz How to pronounce inward (audio) \

Definition of inward (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : toward the inside, center, or interior
2 : toward the inner being



Definition of inward (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : something that is inward
2 inwards\ ˈin-​ərdz How to pronounce inward (audio) , -​wərdz \ plural : innards

Synonyms & Antonyms for inward

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of inward in a Sentence

Adjective moved towards the inward room for more privacy he's more inward with the president than most members of the cabinet Adverb The window faces inward toward the courtyard. He turned his attention inward.
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective In a study focusing on female runners with a history of tibial stress fracture, researchers found that excessive inward motion of the knee and hip during the running gait was a predictor of tibial stress fracture. Ian Mcmahan, Outside Online, 21 Oct. 2020 Even without the head, the figure conveyed for me a sense of inward gazing. The New Yorker, 21 Mar. 2022 Spain’s securing inward investment is already in motion. John Hopewell, Variety, 21 Mar. 2022 The result is a smart but strangely inward performance. New York Times, 10 Feb. 2022 The Co-production Forum is organized with the support of ICEX Spain Trade & Investment, the country’s export and inward investment board, and Audiovisual from Spain, the umbrella brand and the Islands public-sector agency PROEXCA. Emilio Mayorga, Variety, 24 Mar. 2022 The anti-ritualism of the modern mind suspects that there always is a dichotomy between the outward appearance and the inward reality. Michael Brendan Dougherty, National Review, 9 Mar. 2022 Of the over 2021 figure, inward investment and co-production films and high end TV shows accounted for 84 percent or £4.77 billion ($6.5 billion). Alex Ritman, The Hollywood Reporter, 4 Feb. 2022 Carrillo’s form was impeccable on his final dive, an inward 2 1/2 somersault with a 3.1 degree of difficulty. Matt Le Cren,, 1 Mar. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Many are the remains of dead stars that collapsed inward on themselves and just kept going. New York Times, 12 May 2022 As a songwriter, Harry Styles is used to looking inward — but getting reflective with the help of a therapist was a different story. Rachel Desantis,, 9 May 2022 He’s squirrelly, inward, a mystery even to himself. Daniel D'addario, Variety, 4 May 2022 Poverty followed as the strategy backfired, but all subsequent Chinese leaders have adopted some elements of Mao’s inward-looking vision. James T. Areddy, WSJ, 3 May 2022 Drivers living throughout Iowa begin the day by picking up samples at hospitals on the outskirts of the state, then work their way inward to meet other drivers and transfer samples to them., 29 Apr. 2022 Second, my large toe was starting to curve inward toward its neighbors due to a bunion, a common condition called hallux valgus. Outside Online, 28 Apr. 2022 That’s because the OLED panel under the glass layer is flexible, so Apple folded the screen’s bottom inward. Chris Smith, BGR, 26 Apr. 2022 The anterior deltoid makes up the front head of the shoulder, and rotates the shoulder joint by drawing the arm inward. Tyler Hatfield, Men's Health, 26 Apr. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Some destinations currently require masks for inward and outward bound flights -- such as the US, where the mask mandate is set to be in place until at least April 18. Francesca Street, CNN, 15 Mar. 2022 Inflammation of the eyelids (blepharitis), inflammation of the surfaces of the eye, and the inward or outward turning of eyelids can also trigger dry eye, per the AAO. Jenny Mccoy,, 14 Oct. 2021 Henry’s life pulsed between the inward and outward., 8 July 2021 However, adopting a mindset that encompasses centrifugal and centripetal forces will help HR managers maintain balance on the fulcrum of inward and outward trends. Naira Velumyan, Forbes, 18 Mar. 2021 For most Jews, Hanukkah has always been an inward, at-home, after-work-on-a-Wednesday sort of affair. Rachel Levin,, 9 Dec. 2020 Then came Brexit and the election of Trump, both of which marked the symbolic turning-inward of countries that had previously been open to migrants, to cosmopolitanism. Rachel Donadio, The Atlantic, 23 June 2020 Through a metamorphosis of inward self reflection and a malleability to forgive, 3 years did not stretch to forever. Lisa Respers France, CNN, 12 May 2020 Through a metamorphosis of inward self reflection and a malleability to forgive, 3 years did not stretch to forever. Lisa Respers France, CNN, 12 May 2020 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'inward.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of inward


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for inward


Middle English, from Old English inweard (akin to Old High German inwert), from in + -weard -ward entry 1

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Time Traveler for inward

Time Traveler

The first known use of inward was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near inward

in want of


inward dive

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Last Updated

16 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Inward.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for inward


in·​ward | \ ˈin-wərd How to pronounce inward (audio) \

Kids Definition of inward

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : toward the inside or center an inward curve
2 : of or concerning the mind or spirit He felt inward joy.


variants: or inwards \ -​wərdz \

Kids Definition of inward (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : toward the inside or center The door opens inward.
2 : toward the mind or spirit I turned my thoughts inward.

More from Merriam-Webster on inward

Nglish: Translation of inward for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of inward for Arabic Speakers


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